Niagara Gazette

Sports

September 26, 2013

Dr. Scott Darling: Hometown help for sports head injuries

Niagara Gazette — Note from the Editor: The tragic passing of Western New York high school football player Damon Janes last week has renewed interest and discussion of safety in sports, specifically with head-related injuries.

Dr. Scott Darling is a Primary Care Sports Medicine, Concussion Specialist based at the Summit Healthplex on Williams Road in Niagara Falls. He offers his thoughts and expertise as one of many local professionals taking on head injuries in sports.

•••

Recent tragedies have occurred in both high school and collegiate sports that underscore the ongoing and absolutely essential importance of proper head injury management and concussion evaluation. 

As concussion management physicians, we are the ones entrusted to care for and protect our valuable athletes. Unfortunately, even during routine practice or game play the unthinkable can happen, as it did this month to a high school football player in Brocton, N.Y. Damon W. Janes, a running back for the Westfield/Brocton football team, lost consciousness after a helmet-to-helmet hit during a game. He died shortly thereafter in Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo. He was 16.

Statistics show that there were 25 high school athletic fatalities between 2003 and 2012. Unfortunately, these injuries are not uncommon but certainly they can be minimized with a comprehensive concussion team on the sidelines and readily available. Members of this team should include physicians, certified athletic trainers, coaches and physical therapists. 

Concussions and head injuries have been gaining steam as a hot-button issue on all levels of sports, from high school teams to the professional levels. Players in the NFL, for example, are not allowed to return to play the same day of a concussion. 

Awareness of recognizing concussion symptoms such as headache, dizziness, nausea, blurred vision, forgetfulness, sensitivity to light or sound, loss of consciousness and feeling slowed down or foggy is essential for both coaches and parents alike. An athlete should never be allowed to return to play during the same game if any concussion symptoms are observed and/or suspected. 

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page